New EUROCAE group to standardise global airport anti-drone technology chaired by Indra

EUROCAE, the European Organisation for Civil Aviation Equipment, has launched a new working group (WG-115). to develop standards to support the implementation of anti-drone systems in airports in an aligned and consistent manner.  This new group will be chaired by Indra.

The group’s launch meeting took place in December, 2019 and was attended by 44 experts from 36 organisations, including the European Commission, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), and Eurocontrol. During the meeting, a group vote decided to appoint Indra’s representative, Jorge Munir El Malek, as president of the team.

Indra produces one such solution, the ARMS anti-drone solution.  The sense of urgency around this topic came in to light in December, 2018 when London Gatwick Airport was forced to cancel all its operations for more than 30 hours after the sighting of unmanned aircraft flying nearby. The number of reported incidents of this type grows significantly year to year.

EUROCAE’s work to offer common guidelines for the requirements and characteristics such systems must meet is intended to ensure that a common frame of reference is available that enables security and interoperability of the highest level.  During the launch meeting, it was also announced that the American Radio Technical Commission for Aeronautics (RTCA) recently took the decision to create a new committee (SC-238) focused on countering drones (Counter-UAS) that will work together with EUROCAE to produce standardised documents by the two organisations. With this same objective, the group will maintain close collaboration with other international entities such as NATO and the European Defense Agency (EDA).

The new group will carry out its activities during 2020 and 2021, with the objective of preparing three reference documents: the definition of the operational concept linked to this type of systems (C-UAS), the specification of performance requirements for non-cooperative UAS detection, and the specification of interoperability requirements with existing systems, such as Advanced Surface Movement Guidance and Control System (A-SMGCS) of airports.

The anti-drone systems are integrated by sensors of different types that enable them to detect the presence of very small aircraft several kilometers away, identify them and take several countermeasures to prevent their access to the areas protected by those systems. These systems must operate without affecting airport equipment or aircraft.